SchoolArts Magazine

October 2015

SchoolArts is a national art education magazine committed to promoting excellence, advocacy, and professional support for educators in the visual arts since 1901.

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38 OCTOBER 2015 SchoolArts students' heads like headbands, but you could also tie them to an elbow or knee. We made sure the tables were covered, water was in bowls, and paint was easy to get at. It was so fun to watch students work—I had to take pictures and a little video to show them later. They looked like ducks pecking at colored kibble. There was a lot of laughter and joy in the process. During this activity, we discussed how some artists are disabled and must paint with things other than their hands. While our little project was meant to be fun, we all got a little perspective into the world of people who are differently abled. This led to a nice discussion on the need for empathy as we meet people differ- ent from ourselves. Eric Gibbons is an artist and educator who lives in Bordentown, New Jersey. He is also the author of the blog Art Ed Guru. LovsArt@ W E B L I N K masking tape to partially close up portions of the A-frame, flex - ing it to alter the i mage. Pressing an acrylic flat mirror against a canvas board should yield similar results, but the mirror must be slightly flexible for this to work. Draw with a Pencil on a Stick Henri Matisse was bedridden late in his life, so he would draw with a pen- cil at the end of a long stick. This is where I got the idea for drawing and painting in the same way. Students sit across from each other and do por- traits with as much detail as possible. We also discuss facial proportions so they know where eyes, nose, and mouth generally should go. We stress that the images will be odd and that's okay. They are abstracted naturally because of the technique, but students should still try their best and enjoy the process. Paint with Your Head A fun twist to painting can be to paint with your nondominant hand, your foot, holding a clean brush in your mouth, or, as we did, with your head! We created painting contrap- tions from leftover canvas, wire, hot glue, and tape. These were tied onto D uring the summer months, I run an art camp program, which gives me a chance to experiment with les- sons I might be too cautious to use in the highly evaluated public school system. The nice thing is that when things go well—and they usually do—I can apply this new material into my class lessons. One of the most popular weeks of summer camp is "crazy art," when we do many things that are not allowed in school. We do things such as paint with squirt guns, burn sticks over an open flame and draw with the charred ends, stomp through puddles of paint, and even create "exploding" paint with small film canisters, paint, water, and Alka-Seltzer. I realize that these ideas might be making you squirm in your seat, so I'll share some of the more subtle ones that could be used in a classroom. Fun-House Mirror Drawings Using A-frame acrylic mirrors, you can flex the material to create a fun- house mirror effect. We stuff paper or cardboard in the middle and use One of our most popular weeks of summer camp is "craz rt" when we do man hings that are not allowed in school. Eric Gibbons ART CRAZY A L L L E V E L S

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